The Vancouver Canucks are one of the teams looking at the start of training camp in a few days with one of their key players still without a contract as Brock Boeser remains unsigned now into September. Though there is obvious upside for both the player and team to have things resolved before camp, Rick Dhaliwal of Sportsnet tweeted yesterday that there is still “lots of work to do” before a deal can be made.
Boeser, 22, has already scored 59 goals in his young career but has been limited by injury in each of his two full seasons with the Canucks. While other players like Mitch Marner, Brayden Point and Mikko Rantanen have huge point totals to bring up in negotiations, Boeser has a career-high of just 56 thanks to all the time he’s missed. There’s no question how important he is to the Vancouver attack but there are serious risks on both sides to both a bridge deal and long-term deal, which may have made the negotiations a bit more difficult. Boeser is expected to be looking for a four-year deal with a cap hit around $7MM, but with less than two weeks before training camp opens things may have to change to get it done in time.
- The Canucks have another restricted free agent that gets much less publicity, but still could be an important piece. Nikolay Goldobin hasn’t been able to find his way in the NHL just yet, but Dhaliwal reports that there has been “positive dialogue” towards a new contract. The 23-year old Goldobin had 27 points in 63 games last season and showed flashes of the offensive ability that made him the 27th overall pick in 2014, but he needs to find more consistency in order to really be an impact player for the Canucks moving forward.
- Speaking of high draft picks that haven’t quite found their way, the Canucks still have high hopes for defenseman Olli Juolevi as he continues to rehab a knee injury. Juolevi may not participate much in the upcoming prospects camp according to Ben Kuzma of The Province, who spoke with Canucks GM Jim Benning. Benning explained that the team wouldn’t “throw [Juolevi] into the fire” as they try to avoid any setbacks and have him ready for the start of the season. Juolevi underwent knee surgery last December and still has not made his NHL debut despite being the fifth overall pick in 2016.